NPR Blogs

The Salt
11:01 am
Thu March 14, 2013

It's Russian Mardi Gras: Time For Pancakes, Butter And Fistfights

A man dressed as a skomorokh, a medieval East Slavic harlequin, distributes bliny in St. Petersburg, Russia, during the last day of Maslenitsa, March 1, 2009.
Dmitry Lovetsky AP

Originally published on Sun March 17, 2013 1:36 pm

Nothing says party like pancakes and butter. At least, not if you happen to be in Russia this week.

The country is in the midst of celebrating Maslenitsa, an Eastern Slavic folk holiday that takes place the week before the start of Russian Orthodox Lent (this year, it starts March 18). Though now tied to the Christian calendar, Maslenitsa has roots in ancient Slavic sun worshippers — it originally marked the end of winter and advent of spring. And, like Mardi Gras, it involves a whole lot of feasting before the Lenten fast — with blinis, a Russian pancake, as the food of choice.

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The Two-Way
10:51 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Co-Founder Of Khmer Rouge Dies; Ieng Sary Escapes Judgment For Genocide

Ieng Sary.
Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia

The death of Ieng Sary, co-founder of the Khmer Rouge that ruled Cambodia from 1975 to 1979 and killed an estimated 1.7 million of that nation's people in the process, has dashed the hopes "among survivors and court prosecutors that he would ever be punished for his alleged war crimes," The Associated Press writes.

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Shots - Health News
10:36 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Neurologists Warn Against ADHD Drugs To Help Kids Study

Ten milligram tablets of the prescription drug Adderall. The drug is used to treat ADHD and is used by some students to boost their academic performance.
Jb Reed Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Sat March 16, 2013 9:48 am

Adderall and other ADHD medications are among the most prescribed drugs in America.

Quite a few of those pills don't end up being used to treat ADHD, though. They're used as "smart drugs" or "study drugs" by students who find the pills give them a mental edge.

The American Academy of Neurology now says: Stop that.

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The Two-Way
10:25 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Third Night Of Unrest After Teenager Is Fatally Shot By New York City Police

Youtube/AP

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 10:35 am

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
10:01 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Flexible Gender Identities Confound Expectations Of A Male And Female World

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 11:00 am

Last month, a traveler from California named Riya Suising came to Virginia (where I live) on business. While here, Suising decided to visit a spa and relax in its communal, sex-segregated baths, something she, a marathon runner, often does at home.

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The Two-Way
9:50 am
Thu March 14, 2013

'God Particle' Update: Scientists Think They've Pinned Down The Higgs Boson

This is what researchers at the ATLAS detector at the Large Hadron Collider expect a Higgs boson to look like. The Higgs boson is the subatomic particle that scientists say gives everything in the universe mass.
ATLAS Experiment/CERN

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 10:03 am

"Scientists working with data from a large particle accelerator in Europe are now almost certain they have pinned down the elusive sub-atomic particle known as the Higgs Boson," NPR's Joe Palca tells our Newscast Desk.

Or, as it's also known, the "God Particle" (more on that moniker below).

Joe reports that:

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The Two-Way
8:44 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Jobless Claims Drop; Wholesale Prices Rise

The number of people filing first-time claims dropped by 10,000 last week from the week before, to 332,000, the Employment and Training Administration says.

That means claims continue to run at their lowest pace since January 2008. They've now fallen for three straight weeks.

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The Two-Way
8:21 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Chávez's Body Probably Won't Be On Permanent Display, New Leader Says

March 6: In Caracas, many Venezuelans crowded the streets to see the coffin of President Hugo Chavez.
Xinhua /Landov

The decision to embalm the body of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez so that it could be put on permanent display in the country's Museum of the Revolution was made too late, acting President Nicolas Maduro said Thursday in Caracas.

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The Two-Way
7:40 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Pope Francis Begins With Prayer, Turns To Challenges

Pope Francis on Thursday as he left Rome's Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica
Alessandro Bianchi Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 1:57 pm

  • From 'Morning Edition': Sylvia Poggioli on the selection of a new pope
  • From 'Morning Edition': John Burnett profiles the new pope
  • From 'Morning Edition': Correspondent Hugh Bronstein

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The Two-Way
7:37 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Book News: Apple CEO Ordered To Testify In E-Book Price Fixing Case

Apple CEO Tim Cook has reportedly been ordered to testify for four hours in the U.S. government's case against the company.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 8:10 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Salt
7:02 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

Yes, The New Pope Cooks, But He's No Foodie

Pope Francis waves to the crowd in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican on Wednesday.
Peter Macdiarmid Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 12:13 pm

As the white smoke cleared from the skies above the Vatican on Wednesday, one of the first widely reported personal tidbits to emerge about the newly selected pope, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, is that the Argentine cooks for himself. But the new pontiff, who will now be known as Francis, is hardly a foodie, it seems.

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The Two-Way
7:00 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

U.S. Troops Train For Possible Mission To Secure Syrian Chemical Agents

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 7:03 pm

Several weeks ago, Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, said the U.S. is planning what to do about Syria's vast chemical weapons program once Bashar Assad's regime falls. The Syrians are believed to have hundreds of tons of chemical agents, including sarin, one of the deadliest chemical agents. A few drops can be lethal.

So the central question is this: How can those sites be secured so they don't fall into the wrong hands?

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Shots - Health News
6:32 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

Why Relatives Should Be Allowed To Watch CPR On Loved Ones

A recent study finds that relatives present during resuscitation attempts suffer fewer psychological effects later.
istockphoto.com

Picture this: Your spouse or child has collapsed and isn't breathing. You call 911, and the paramedics rush in and take charge. But you are banished to another room while the medical people try to bring your loved one back to life.

It's about the most stressful scene imaginable. And it's what usually happens.

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